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Cybersecurity and Election Interference and Integrity

(605 reviews)

Produced on August 28, 2018

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Course Information

Time 61 minutes
Difficulty Advanced

Course Description

With the 2018 Congressional Midterm elections around the corner, combatting and mitigating election and campaign cyber threats is more important than ever. Join us for a lively discussion on recent data breach events and the state of cybersecurity for federal and state campaigns and elections, including an overview of the state and federal election administration and a break down of the threats to voter data and election systems.

This discussion will be led by Ari M. Schwartz, the Managing Director of Cybersecurity Services at Venable LLP and the former senior director for cybersecurity on the United States National Security Council Staff at the White House, and Ronald M. Jacobs, the co-chair of Venable LLP’s Political Law Group.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Analyze of recent events including the ongoing Cambridge Analytica data use scandal and the RNC voter database leak
  2. Dissect cybersecurity for campaign organizations and advertising issues
  3. Scope out the federal landscape of election security policy from Congress and relevant agencies
  4. Discuss tactics for threat mitigation and the future impact of major data breach events

Credit Information

This course is pre-approved for CLE credit in the following states. If your state is not listed, contact support for more information on how to receive credit

Lawline reports attorney attendance in select states. View more about CLE reporting .


Ronald Jacobs

Venable LLP

Ronald Jacobs, a partner in Venable’s Washington D.C. office serves as chair of Venable’s Political Law Group. He advises clients on all aspects of state and federal political law, including campaign finance, lobbying disclosure, gift and ethics rules, pay-to-play laws, and tax implications of political activities. Mr. Jacobs assists clients with crises response to government investigations and enforcement actions, Congressional investigations, class-action law suits, and other high-profile problems that involve potentially damaging legal and public-relations matters. Along with Lawrence Norton, he co-edits the firm’s Political Law Briefing blog.

Mr. Jacobs understands the often-contradictory rules imposed by the different laws that apply to political activities. He offers practical advice that considers not only the legal requirements, but also the reputational risk, of political activity to a broad range of clients, including large and small companies, trade associations, charities, campaigns, Super PACs, ideological groups, individuals, and political vendors. He has developed political compliance programs for Fortune 500 companies and other clients that lobby and make political contributions nationwide.

In addition to counseling clients on political law matters, Mr. Jacobs has extensive experience in the administrative rulemaking process and in litigating challenges to agency decisions in federal court. He has represented clients in administrative matters before the Federal Election Commission, the Merit Systems Protection Board, the Federal Trade Commission, the United States Congress, and in federal court.



Some of Mr. Jacobs’s significant matters have included:

  • Obtaining an advisory opinion from the Federal Election Commission to allow an association to launch a novel new online fundraising platform to support candidates.
  • Serving as general counsel to a successful 2014 candidate for the United States Senate.
  • Representing a Super PAC that supported a candidate in the 2012 presidential primary, creating one of the first Super PACs active in a Los Angeles mayor's race and one of the first Super PACs active in a local Maryland election, as well as representing Super PACs active in Congressional elections.
  • Creating a 501(c)(4) that engaged in issue advocacy and candidate activities connection with the 2012 presidential general election.
  • Obtaining approval from Senate Ethics Committee for major nationally-televised charitable event held during the Holiday Season in Washington.
  • Developing pay-to-play compliance policy and procedures for a large hedge fund that actively solicits state contributions and for a hospitality company that serves state and local governments.
  • Successfully defending a large, nationally-known trade association during a Congressional investigation into allegations of fraudulent grassroots lobbying activity.
  • Assisting a large social welfare organization with multiple Congressional investigations and several class action lawsuits.
  • Serving as outside pro bono counsel to Warrior Canine Connection, a charity that assists soldiers suffering from traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder to train service dogs for physically wounded soldiers.

Ari Schwartz

Venable LLP

A leading voice in national cybersecurity policy with over two decades of government and nonprofit sector experience, Ari Schwartz is the Managing Director of Cybersecurity Services for Venable's Cybersecurity Risk Management Group. In his role, Ari directs the establishment of cybersecurity consulting services for Venable, assisting organizations with understanding and development of risk management strategies, including implementation of the Cybersecurity Framework and other planning tools to help minimize risk. Ari also coordinates the Coalition for Cybersecurity Policy and Law, a group of leading cybersecurity companies dedicated to educating policymakers on cybersecurity issues and promoting a vibrant marketplace for cybersecurity technology solutions. 

Prior to joining Venable, Ari was a member of the White House National Security Council, where he served as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Cybersecurity. As Director, Ari coordinated all network defense cybersecurity policy, including critical infrastructure protection, federal network protection, supply-chain efforts, cybersecurity standards promotion, and information sharing. He led the White House's legislative and policy outreach to businesses, trade groups, academics, and civil liberties groups on cybersecurity and developed new policies and legislation, including development of the Executive Orders on the Security of Consumer Financial Protection, Cybersecurity Information Sharing, and Sanctions Against Individuals Engaging in Malicious Cyber-Enabled Activities. Additionally, Ari led the successful White House rollout of the Cybersecurity Framework and the White House Cybersecurity Summit held at Stanford University. 

Ari also served in the Department of Commerce, where he advised the Secretary on technology policy matters related to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). He led the Department's Internet Policy Task Force and represented the Obama Administrations on major Internet policy issues on privacy and security before Congress, at public events, and before the media. 

Ari began his career in Washington at OMB Watch. For twelve years, he worked at the Center for Democracy and Technology, including serving as Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, developing legislation and policy related to privacy, cybersecurity, and open government.


Gail D.

Outstanding presentation.

Michael R.

Great course.

June C.

Well done! One of the best!

Carol C.

Very timely and interesting presentation. I liked the panel format and the panelists interacted well.

Robert L. P.

Excellent and l liked that it was on topic with current pubic interests.

Jennifer L.

Very interesting overview of the issues we have all been hearing and reading about, assembled in a well-organized fashion. Thanks.

Joan K L.

Very interesting program presented by 2 clearly knowledgeable people

Lisa D.

Very relevant and timely.

Joan H.

Good information

alice p.

Excellent presentation. Far better than I expected from an online course.

Scott M.

great webinar


Well informed and qualified speakers made it interesting

Kimberly F.

Great courses. They are relevant, informative and convenient, thank you!

Geoffrey W.

Very, very interesting. And sobering.

Kathleen K.

Very informative. Thank you!

John H.

Another Timely Course

Teresa H.

The courses with two people interacting are sooo much more interesting (whatever the topic) than others. Enjoyed this.

Cullen M.

Very current and important legal and political issues.

Elizabeth A.

Interesting and informative!

Richard G.

Interesting, timely, and well-presented.

R. Christopher R.

Fascinating in today's political and legal climate

Paige C.

This may not be relevant to my legal practice area, but it is relevant to my life and to caring for our democracy, so thank you for this presentation!

Antoine M.

Good comprehensive legal review of a relevant topic

Michael A. S.

fantastic panel.

James M.

Excellent presentation on a timely topic.

Janine H.

I love the blue team/ red team combo--can be applied in other settings.

Linda W.

Very interesting program!

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